FARMERS often do not put safety first because they simply can’t afford it.
Safety equipment can be expensive but WorkCover representatives argue you can’t afford not to put safety first and now farmers have a bit of help.
WorkCover staff chose the Australian National Field Days to launch a $2000 safety rebate.
WorkCover assistant director, Tony Williams, said the rebate would go to sheep and cattle farmers who buy a range of equipment such as roll cages, lifting devices, animal restraints, drainage systems and even sunshade.
“We know that while safety on farms is extremely important, it can at times be costly,” Mr Williams said.
He said statistically sheep and cattle producers suffer the third highest rate of injury behind road and freight workers and construction workers.
“We recognise this and that’s why WorkCover has a long history of rebate programs where we help fund the cost for businesses like farms to adopt better work health safety procedures.”
The sheep beef cattle industry rebate will be available for the next six months.
Sheep farmer Gerard Browne said he had gone to the field days to look at some handling equipment and was directed to the WorkCover site to fill out a form for the rebate.
He said he would be able to put safety first sooner rather than later.
Mr Williams said, already there had been a phenomenal amount of interest in the rebate and the field days had proved a perfect site with to launch this initiative.
“Farm owners know that a safe farm is a sustainable one, however finding the money for a safety improvement can be a challenge,” Mr Williams said.
“By offering this rebate, WorkCover will be helping more NSW farmers implement safety changes that they otherwise may not have been able to afford.
WorkCover team members will soon be visiting sheep and beef farmers throughout the state to promote the rebate and provide assistance and support for farmers.
“This will result in safer farms as well as a reduction in injury and illness rates across the State.”
For more information on the sheep beef cattle rebate, visit the Australian National Field Day in Orange or visit WorkCover’s website at www.workcover.nsw.gov.au or call 13 10 50.